The Book of Matthew-Chapter 7

Yeshua continues his teaching on Torah observance.
(1) Do not judge, lest you be judged (the Torah teaches us how to make good judgments, such as equal weights and measures, at least two witnesses, hearing both sides and using God’s word as the standard. We are not to judge by our “feelings” or by what we “see”). (2) For in the same way you judge, you will be judged; and by your standard of measure, it shall be measured to you (“measure for measure”-this is common Jewish teaching at the time-Jam 1.12-25 basically says the same thing). (3) And why do you look (judging by what you see) at the speck (a small sin by comparison) in your brother’s eye (life), but do not notice the log (greater sin by comparison) that is in your own eye (life-Rom 2.21-23; Jam 2.1-4)? (4) Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye (life), and behold, the log (a greater sin) is in your own eye (life)?’ (5) You hypocrite (actor), first take the log (your greater sin) out of your own eye (life), and then you will see clearly (correct) to take the speck out of your brother’s eye (life). (6) Do not give what is holy (the Torah-Rom 7.12-knowledge can bestow power, and God’s knowledge in the hands of the wrong people has caused much damage) to dogs (unbelievers-2 Pet 2.21-22) and do not throw your pearls (idiom for the Scriptures) before swine (apostates- Isa 66.17; 2 Pet 2.22), lest they trample them with their feet and turn and tear you to pieces (despise and abuse you). (7) Ask, and it shall be given you. Seek and you shall find, knock and it shall be opened (what are we to ask, seek and knock for? The spiritual man seeks the truth in the Scriptures-John 1.17. John 17 is a prayer of Yeshua and the prayer is asking for unity between the believer and the Father. This cannot be accomplished without knowing the Word of God). (8) For everyone who asks receives and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it shall be opened (provided we ask with the right motives). (9) For what man is there among you, when his son shall ask him for a loaf, will give him a stone? (10) Or if he shall ask for a fish, he will not give him a snake, will he? (11) If you, then, being evil (in general), know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more (example of Hillel rule # 1) shall your Father who is in heaven give what is good to those who ask him. (12) Therefore whatever you want others to do for you, do so for them (In a positive spin, Yeshua directly quotes Rabbi Hillel, the grandfather of Gamaliel, Paul’s teacher, who said “What is hateful to you, do it not to others, this is the entire Torah and the rest is commentary-Babylonian Talmud, Shabbat 31a). This is the Law (teaching of the Torah) and the Prophets (Nevi’im….Yeshua is saying that “I am teaching what these say). (13) Enter (by faith) by the narrow gate (The Torah/Yeshua because he is the door and because sin is defined and it shows the way to live and what to learn. Narrow in Hebrew thought means “danger”) for the gate is wide (“safe” in Hebrew thought= no rules), and the way (to live) is broad (safe, no rules) that leads to destruction, and many are those who enter by it (there will be no difficulty in telling the difference between the two, it is easily known). (14) For the gate is small and the way is narrow that leads to life (when entered, it is unpleasant for the flesh to walk in, hedged up with afflictions, trouble and persecution, even from family), and few are those who find it. (15) Beware of the false prophets (Deut 13.1-5; Deut 18.21-22; Isa 8.20; Acts 17.10-11) who come to you in sheep’s clothing (tallit’s, which held the tzitzit, were made of wool), but inwardly are ravenous wolves. (16) You will know them by their fruits (external works, healing, miracles, testimonies of healed personal relationships are not what is meant here. False prophets can appear “righteous” and have similar “signs” in their ministry. Even pagan and secular organizations have healing stories. What is meant here is doctrines that are true to the Torah and notice the fruits come from a tree, and the tree is the Torah-Prov 3.18). Grapes (good teaching, insight) are not gathered from thorn bushes (unbelievers), nor figs from thistles (a Hebrew parallelism), are they? (17) Even so, every good tree (the righteous, green with life-Psa 1.1-3; Ezekiel 17.24; Luke 23.31) bears good fruit (insight and teaching); but the rotten tree bears bad fruit (corrupt doctrines, no insight and teaching not in line with the Torah). (18) A good tree cannot produce bad fruit (corrupt teaching and doctrine), nor can a rotten tree produce good fruit (true teaching and doctrine). (19) Every tree (a tree is symbolic of people-Psa 1.1-3) that does not bear good fruit (Ezekiel 15.1-7; John 15.2) is cut down and thrown into the fire. (20) So then, you shall know them by their fruits (try their doctrines with the Scriptures-Deut 13.1-5; Isa 8.20; Acts 17.10-11). (21) Not everyone who says to me ‘Lord, Lord’ will enter the kingdom of heaven (his movement); but he who does the will of my Father (where could the Father’s will be found? 1 John 2.1-4; 1 John 3.4; John 7.16-24; John 2.1-17) who is in heaven. (22) Many will say to me on that day (when Messiah returns on the day of judgment), ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name cast out demons, and in your name perform many miracles?’ (23) And then I will declare to them ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you who practice lawlessness (lawlessness=”anomia” meaning “no Torah”-Matt 24.12; Luke 13.24-27; 1 John 3.4; 2 Thes 2.8-do a word study on “lawlessness” and you will see it means those who think the Torah has been done away with or has no consequence anymore. Now, we know from Matt 5.17-20 that Yeshua did not come to do away with the Torah, and this includes even the smallest letter or stroke of it because even they mean something. Now, you have to ask, when Yeshua returns, what group calls him “Lord”, tries to work miracles and prophesy and yet teaches that the Torah has been done away with, resulting in “lawlessness” meaning “no Torah?”). (24) Therefore every one who hears these words of mine (his sayings are those of the Father) and acts (a “doer” of the word-James 1.22-25) upon them, may be compared to a wise man , who built his house (life) upon a rock (A “rock” is symbolic of the Messiah, Torah, Sinai-Exo 17.1-6;Dan 2.35; Gen 49.24; Exo 33.21-23). (25) And the rain descended and the floods came, and the winds blew (strange doctrines, false teachings, corruptions), and burst against that house and yet it did not fall, for it had been founded upon the rock (Messiah, Sinai, Torah-1 Cor 3.11-16; Isa 28.16; Psa 118.22). (26) And every one who hears these words of mine (his sayings are those of the Father) and does not act (do) upon them, will be like a foolish man who built his house (life) upon the sand. (27) And the rain descended and the floods came and the winds blew (strange doctrines and corrupt teachings), and burst against that house and it fell, and great was its fall. (28) The result was that when Yeshua had finished these words, the multitudes were amazed at his teaching; (29) for he was teaching them as having authority and not as their scribes (he spoke in his own name, like the “lawgiver” at Sinai. The scribes, rabbis and sages never said anything of themselves. It was always in the “name of” their previous rabbi or other rabbis who preceded them and said they were doing that. But, Yeshua is the “word” made flesh and the “word” was equated with God and the Torah-1 Sam 3.21; John 1.1. The Torah has a book called Deuteronomy, but in Hebrew it is called “Devarim” which means “words”, and in this case, the “words” of God, and relates right back to “these words of mine” in v 24 and v 26).

Now, here is the essence of chapters 5, 6, and 7 to understand the Torah and the New Testament. These chapters are not a literal “how to live.” They (we) can’t live like these chapters say we should live because it would destroy us. We are to let the Torah guide us as goals, to convict us. Once we know we sin, we call on our redeemer. Yeshua is destroying their self-righteousness so they will listen about the righteousness that comes by grace through faith. He wants them to realize they can’t stand before God in their own righteousness. They need a redeemer because they know they can’t live up to what Yeshua teaches in these chapters. He is letting them know what it would be like to stand before God in their own righteousness.

Posted in Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Understanding the New Testament, Verse-by-Verse Bible Studies

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